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RICSRE Seminar Series, Deborah Vargas

"Listening to Chicana Singers, Sounding Borderlands Imaginaries”
Vargas’s talk will focus on selected chapters of her award-winning book, Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda (University of Minnesota Press, 2012). Focusing on performers such as Chelo Silva, Eva Garza, and Selena, Vargas places Chicana feminist and Latina/o queer studies in conversation with geography, folklore, and sound studies to argue that the women she writes about propel alternative borderlands imaginaries of queer love, intimacy, and belonging. Drawing from oral histories, ethnography, and archival research, Vargas offers a feminist queer analysis of Chicana singers who have been unheard and misheard within Chicano cultural studies to propose a framework of diva dissonance that unsettles the heteronormative limits of “la onda” as the canonical borderlands musical soundscape.
Deborah R. Vargas is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Riverside.  Vargas is the author of Dissonant Divas in Chicana Music: The Limits of La Onda (University of Minnesota Press, 2012), which was awarded the Woody Guthrie Prize for Best Book in Popular Music Studies from The International Association for the Study of Popular Music; the prize for best book in Chicano Studies from the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies; and an honorable mention for Best Book in Latino Studies from the Latin American Studies Association. Her publications have appeared in American QuarterlyAztlán: A Journal of Chicano StudiesFeminist StudiesSocial TextWomen and Performance: A Journal of Feminist Theory. Vargas is currently co-editing, with Nancy Raquel Mirabal and Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes, Keywords for Latino Studies (New York University Press, forthcoming 2016).



Thursday, October 16, 2014. 12:00PM


Terrace Room, 4th Floor, Margaret Jacks Hall, Building 360


Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity


Open to all Stanford faculty, graduate students, and CCSRE affiliates. RSVP on this form.